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Local Medicare counseling available

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POSTED October 12, 2017 1:17 p.m.

 Each year Medicare beneficiaries have the opportunity to review their health and drug coverage for the next year during the Open Enrollment Period Oct. 15 through Dec. 7. RSVP of Central Kansas and Barton County Extension SHICK counselors are available to answer questions and assist beneficiaries with their shopping and enrollment.

According to Secretary Tim Keck at the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services, benefits and premiums could be changing for 2018. And the available plans and what they cover changes from one year to the next.

“So even if you’re confident you want to keep your current coverage for the coming year, it’s important to understand any changes that may apply and check to make sure your current plan is still the best available option,” said RSVP of Central Kansas Director Linn Hogg. “If the plan you have now was the best option when you shopped last year, it’s important to verify that again before you lock yourself in for another year.”  

RSVP of Central Kansas is one of two agencies in Barton County that sponsors the Senior Health Insurance Counseling for Kansas (SHICK) program. This is a free program offering Kansans an opportunity to talk with trained, community volunteers and get answers to questions about Medicare and other insurance issues. SHICK provides you with many resources that will help you with your questions about Medicare.

Hogg said there are six counselors in Barton County. “Since October of last year our SCHICK counselors have counseled 173 seniors. Our counselors have saved $12,321 by comparing Part “D” prescriptions plans and helping seniors enroll in the most affordable one.”

The counselors receive training on Medicare, Medicare Supplement Insurance, Long-Term Care and other health insurance subjects that concern older Kansans.

They do not work for any insurance company. The goal is to educate and assist the public to make informed decisions on what’s best for them.

Appointments can be made by calling RSVP of Central Kansas at 620-792-1614, Barton County Extension Office at 620-793-1910 or in Hoisington call the Friendship House at 620-653-3255 in the morning.

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